2 foot tall POV globe

[Ytai] let us know about his POV globe, all four parts of its current progress. While he says he was inspired to write up the project from a YouTube clip, we know the real reason. Regardless, the plan is to have a 2 foot diameter globe with 256 LEDs spinning at 50 revolutions per second streaming images from an SD card using SPI. While the project isn’t completed yet, we know [Ytai] will pull through like he has in the past, and you can be sure we’ll keep you up to date on his progress.

GBA emulator ported to Didj

Tired of messing with the hardware of the Didj you picked up? Now you can use it for gaming on that last road trip of the summer. A Game Boy Advanced emulator has been ported for use on both the Didj and the Explorer. You’ll have to dig up a copy of the original bios for a GBA as well as some ROMs, but the rest seems pretty straight forward. We are still holding out hope for Doom or Quake on the Didj, but this will help us wait a bit longer.

[Thanks Nirvous via Rosincore]

Beer fridge holds iPad hostage

A hackathon by the engineers over at Yelp produced this iPad-centric beer fridge. A thirsty dude bellies up to the contraption, swipes his or her RFID card, then dispenses a glass of frothy goodness. The iPad display shows information about what’s on tap, and allows you to give it a rating. This is based on kegbot but it has a few extra tricks. Instead of measuring how much beer is left via weight, this version uses a flow sensor on the beer lines. Temperature data is recorded from an analog sensor affixed to the keg itself, and the whole shebang is pulled together via an Arduino connected to the serial port of the iPad. You can even check on the keg over the Internet. See for yourself after the break.

[Read more...]

Adding an input to an old head unit

Tape decks in cars? Yes, that used to be quite common before optical media took over road. [Nirav Patel's] 2004 Toyota Corolla had a deck that he used with a tape adapter in order to listen to music from his iPhone. But one day something happened and, although the adapter still worked, the cassette player started making distracting noises. [Nirav] set out to quiet the noise and install an auxiliary audio input for the sound system. There were some tripping points along the way, like breaking everything and starting a small fire, but perseverance got him to his goal. Because these units are built with compatibility for things like CD changers they have a communications bus called AVC-Lan. This protocol has been sniffed out and documented, and [Nirav] even found an existing audio-input hack that he based his design around. Now he’s able to plug directly into the dash and ditch the cassette adapter.

We’ve seen [Nirav's] work a few times before. He’s shown us a first person shooter controller and his site was a resource in our Launchpad programming with Linux post.

[via Make]

Airsoft minigun packs quite a punch

[Kuba_T1000] built a multi-barrell Airsoft minigun with an unbelievable firing rate and an almost inexhaustible ammo pack. The gun is made entirely from aluminum which meant some time on the CNC machine. The six barrels don’t rotate but they are all used, resulting in the carnage shown in the video after the break. That large box you see is the ammo pack, which can hold 16,000 BBs and uses an electric feed system to reach the necessary delivery speeds. It is certainly not something you’d want to run into as part of an automated turret.

[Read more...]

One-handed GameCube controller

[Hasse] built a one-handed video game controller for his brother. He fit everything he needed into the body of an existing controller and came up with a very usable system. The controller will be right-hand only, so the left shoulder button was moved underneath the right side where your middle finger can get at it. This leaves the d-pad and the left analog stick to account for. By combining an ATtiny44A, an accelerometer, and a digital to analog converter the controller can sense motion. The microcontroller reads in the accelerometer data, gives user feedback via four added LEDs on the d-pad, and the DAC feeds the appropriate signals back into the controller as if you were using the stick. There is even a switch to select whether the motion data is mapped to the analog stick or to the d-pad. We’ve included a demo video after the break.

Find that you also need some one-armed typing assistance? Check out this half-qwerty keyboard hack. [Read more...]

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